A sickle, bagging hook or reaping-hook, is a hand-held agricultural tool designed with variously curved blades and used for harvesting, or reaping, grain crops or cutting succulent forage chiefly for feeding livestock, either freshly cut or dried as hay. Falx was a synonym but was used to mean any of a number of tools that had a curved blade, sharp on the inside edge such as a scythe. Since the beginning of the Iron Age hundreds of region-specific variants of the sickle have evolved of iron and steel; this great diversity of sickle types across many cultures can be divided into smooth or serrated blades, both of which can be used for cutting either green grass or mature cereals using different techniques. The serrated blade that originated in prehistoric sickles still dominates in the reaping of grain and is found in modern grain-harvesting machines and in some kitchen knives; the development of the sickle in Mesopotamia can be traced back to times that pre-date the Neolithic Era. Large quantities of sickle blades have been excavated in sites surrounding Israel that have been dated to the Epipaleolithic era.
Formal digs in Wadi Ziqlab, Jordan have unearthed various forms of early sickle blades. The artifacts possessed a jagged edge; this intricate ‘tooth-like’ design showed a greater degree of design and manufacturing credence than most of the other artifacts that were discovered. Sickle blades found during this time were made of flint and used in more of a sawing motion than with the more modern curved design. Flints from these sickles have been discovered near Mt. Carmel, which suggest the harvesting of grains from the area about 10,000 years ago; the sickle had a profound impact on the Agricultural Revolution by assisting in the transition to farming and crop based lifestyle. It is now accepted that the use of sickles led directly to the domestication of Near Eastern Wild grasses. Research on domestication rates of wild cereals under primitive cultivation found that the use of the sickle in harvesting was critical to the people of early Mesopotamia; the narrow growing season in the area and the critical role of grain in the late Neolithic Era promoted a larger investment in the design and manufacture of sickle over other tools.
Standardization to an extent was done on the measurements of the sickle so that replacement or repair could be more immediate. It was important that the grain be harvested at the appropriate time at one elevation so that the next elevation could be reaped at the proper time; the sickle provided a more efficient option in collecting the grain and sped up the developments of early agriculture. The sickle remained common both in the Ancient Near East and in Europe. Numerous sickles have been found deposited in hoards in the context of the European Urnfield culture, suggesting a symbolic or religious significance attached to the artifact. In archaeological terminology, Bronze Age sickles are classified by the method of attaching the handle. E.g. the knob-sickle is so called because of a protruding knob at the base of the blade which served to stabilize the attachment of the blade to the handle. The sickle played a prominent role in the Druids' Ritual of oak and mistletoe as described from a single passage in Pliny the Elder's Natural History: Due to this passage, despite the fact that Pliny does not indicate the source on which he based this account, some branches of modern Druidry have adopted the sickle as a ritual tool.
The sickle has been discovered in southwest North America with a unique structure. These sickles are said to have originated from the Far East. There is evidence that Kodiak islanders had for cutting grass “sickles made of a sharpened animal shoulder blade”; the artifacts found in present-day Arizona and New Mexico resemble curved tools that were made from the horns of mountain sheep. A similar site discovered sickles made from other material such as the Caddo Sickle, made from a deer mandible. Scripture from early natives document the use of these sickles in the cutting of grass; the instruments ranged from 13 to 16 inches tip to tip. Several other digs in eastern Arizona uncovered wooden sickles that were shaped in a similar fashion; the handles of the tools help describe how the tool was held in such a way so that the inner portion that contained the cutting surface could serve as a gathering surface for the grain. Sickles were sharpened by scraping a shape beveled edge with a coarse tool; this action has left marks on artifacts.
The sharpening process was necessary to keep the cutting edge from being dulled after extended use. The edge is seen to be quite polished, which in part proves that the instrument was used to cut grass. After collection, the grass was used as material to create bedding; the sickle in general provided the convenience of cutting the grass as well as gathering in one step. In South America, the sickle is used as a tool to harvest rice. Rice clusters are left to dry in the sun; the genealogy of sickles with serrated edge reaches back to the Stone Age, when individual pieces of flint were first attached to a “blade body” of wood or bone. Teeth have been cut with hand-held chisels into iron, steel-bladed sickles for a long time. In many countries on the African continent and South America as well as the Near and Far East this is still the case in the regions within these large geographies where the traditional village blacksmith remains alive and well. En
A granary is a storehouse or room in a barn for threshed grain or animal feed. Ancient or primitive granaries are most made out of pottery. Granaries are built above the ground to keep the stored food away from mice and other animals. From ancient times grain has been stored in bulk; the oldest granaries yet found date back to 9500 BC and are located in the Pre-Pottery Neolithic A settlements in the Jordan Valley. The first were located in places between other buildings; however beginning around 8500 BC, they were moved inside houses, by 7500 BC storage occurred in special rooms. The first granaries measured 3 x 3 m on the outside and had suspended floors that protected the grain from rodents and insects and provided air circulation; these granaries are followed by those in Mehrgarh in the Indus Valley from 6000 BC. The ancient Egyptians made a practice of preserving grain in years of plenty against years of scarcity; the climate of Egypt being dry, grain could be stored in pits for a long time without discernible loss of quality.
A silo was a pit for storing grain. It is distinct from a granary, an above-ground structure. Simple storage granaries raised up on four or more posts appeared in the Yangshao culture in China and after the onset of intensive agriculture in the Korean peninsula during the Mumun pottery period as well as in the Japanese archipelago during the Final Jōmon/Early Yayoi periods. In the archaeological vernacular of Northeast Asia, these features are lumped with those that may have functioned as residences and together are called'raised floor buildings'. In vernacular architecture of Indonesian archipelago granaries are made of wood and bamboo materials and most of them are built raised up on four or more posts to avoid rodents and insects. Examples of Indonesian granary is Sundanese Minang rangkiang. In Great Britain small granaries were built on mushroom-shaped stumps called staddle stones, they were built of timber frame construction and had slate roofs. Larger ones were similar to linhays, but with the upper floor enclosed.
Access to the first floor was via stone staircase on the outside wall. Towards the close of the 19th century, warehouses specially intended for holding grain began to multiply in Great Britain. There are climatic difficulties in the way of storing grain in Great Britain on a large scale, but these difficulties have been overcome. Modern grain farming operations use manufactured steel granaries to store grain on-site until it can be trucked to major storage facilities in anticipation of shipping; the large mechanized facilities seen in Russia and North America are known as grain elevators. Grain must be kept away from moisture for as long as possible to preserve it in good condition and prevent mold growth. Newly harvested grain brought into a granary tends to contain excess moisture, which encourages mold growth leading to fermentation and heating, both of which are undesirable and affect quality. Fermentation spoils grain and may cause chemical changes that create poisonous mycotoxins. One traditional remedy is to spread the grain in thin layers on a floor, where it is turned to aerate it thoroughly.
Once the grain is sufficiently dry it can be transferred to a granary for storage. A modern variation on this, is to use a grain auger to move grain stored in one granary to another. In modern silos, grain is force-aerated in situ or circulated through external grain drying equipment. Hórreo Raccard Storage silo Corn crib Groote Schuur, the stately South African home was a granary. Rice barn Treppenspeicher Ghorfa Parish granary
Jasper, an aggregate of microgranular quartz and/or chalcedony and other mineral phases, is an opaque, impure variety of silica red, brown or green in color. The common red color is due to iron inclusions; the mineral aggregate is used for ornamentation or as a gemstone. It can be polished and is used for items such as vases and snuff boxes; the specific gravity of jasper is 2.5 to 2.9. A green variety with red spots, known as heliotrope, is one of the traditional birthstones for March. Jaspilite is a banded iron formation rock that has distinctive bands of jasper; the name means "spotted or speckled stone", is derived via Old French jaspre and Latin iaspidem from Greek ἴασπις iaspis, from an Afroasiatic language. The etymology of the gemstone Jasper is believed to be unrelated to that of the English given name Jasper. Green jasper was used to make bow drills in Mehrgarh between 4th and 5th millennium BC. Jasper is known to have been a favorite gem in the ancient world. On Minoan Crete, jasper was carved to produce seals circa 1800 BC, as evidenced by archaeological recoveries at the palace of Knossos.
Although the term jasper is now restricted to opaque quartz, the ancient iaspis was a stone of considerable translucency including nephrite. The jasper of antiquity was in many cases distinctly green, for it is compared to the emerald and other green objects. Jasper is referred to in the Nibelungenlied as being green; the jasper of the ancients included stones which would now be classed as chalcedony, the emerald-like jasper may have been akin to the modern chrysoprase. The Hebrew word may have designated a green jasper. Flinders Petrie suggested that the odem, the first stone on the High Priest's breastplate, was a red jasper, whilst tarshish, the tenth stone, may have been a yellow jasper. Jasper is an opaque rock of any color stemming from the mineral content of the original sediments or ash. Patterns arise during the consolidation process forming flow and depositional patterns in the original silica rich sediment or volcanic ash. Hydrothermal circulation is thought to be required in the formation of jasper.
Jasper can be modified by the diffusion of minerals along discontinuities providing the appearance of vegetative growth, i.e. dendritic. The original materials are fractured and/or distorted, after deposition, into diverse patterns, which are filled in with other colorful minerals. Weathering, with time, will create intensely colored superficial rinds; the classification and naming of jasper varieties presents a challenge. Terms attributed to various well-defined materials includes the geographic locality where it is found, sometimes quite restricted such as "Bruneau" and "Lahontan", rivers and individual mountains. A few are designated by the place of origin such as a brown Egyptian or red African. Jasper is the main component in the silica-rich parts of banded iron formations which indicate low, but present, amounts of dissolved oxygen in the water such as during the Great Oxidation Event or snowball earths; the red bands more competent than the hematite layers surrounding it, are made of microcrystalline red chert called jasper.
Picture jaspers exhibit combinations of patterns resulting in what appear to be images. Diffusion from a center produces a distinctive orbicular appearance, i.e. leopard skin jasper, or linear banding from a fracture as seen in leisegang jasper. Healed, fragmented rock produces brecciated jasper. While these "picture jaspers" can be found all over the world, specific colors or patterns are unique to the geographic region from which they originate; the primary source of the stone is Indonesia in Purbalingga district. Oregon's Biggs jasper, Idaho's Bruneau jasper from the Bruneau River canyon are fine examples. Other examples can be seen at Llanddwyn Island in Wales. Basanite, lydian stone, or lydite are a variety of jasper from New England, black flinty or cherty, they have been used as touchstones in testing the purity of precious metal alloys. "Jasper". Encyclopedia Americana. 1920
The Schöningen spears are a set of eight wooden throwing spears from the Palaeolithic Age that were excavated between 1994 and 1998 in the open-cast lignite mine in Schöningen, Helmstedt district, together with an associated cache of 16,000 animal bones. The excavations took place under the management of Hartmut Thieme of the Lower Saxony State Service for Cultural Heritage. Assessed as being between 380,000 and 400,000 years old, they represent the oldest preserved hunting weapons of prehistoric Europe so far discovered; as such they predate the age of Neanderthal Man, is associated with Homo heidelbergensis. The spears support the practice of hunting by archaic humans in Europe in the late Lower Paleolithic; the age of the spears was estimated from their stratigraphic position, "sandwiched between deposits of the Elsterian and Saalian glaciations, situated within a well-studied sedimentary sequence.". More thermoluminescence dating of heated flints in a deposit beneath that which contained the spears suggested that the spears were between 337,000 and 300,000 years old.
The site of the finds is one of 13 Palaeolithic places of discovery in the open-cast, lignite mine, excavated in the course of the prospection of the quaternary surface layer from 1992 to 2009. The 60 by 50 m excavation base, excluded from coal mining represents a small segment of a former littoral zone; this zone has been visited over millennia, between the Elster- and Saale ice ages, by humans and animals alike. The pedestal displays five massive, layered sediment packages that were created by varying levels of the lake and silting-up processes. Thanks to the quick, airtight covering of the archaeological layers by mud, the organic materials are exceptionally well preserved. In the sequence of the sedimentary layers, climate changes can be read with a high resolution - from a warm, dry phase to airy deciduous forests to tundra; the spears themselves are from an 10 m wide and 50 m long strip, parallel to the former lake shore in the sedimentary layer four, the late Holstein-interglacial. The archaeological layers beneath have only been excavated and have been an objective of a research excavation by the DFG since 2010.
Together with the spears, some stone artefacts, chips as well as over 10,000 animal bones were found, amongst them 90% horse bones, followed by red deer and European bison. The horse bones are indicative of at least 20 individuals, they show numerous cut marks made by stone tools, but only a few bite marks made by animals. The site is interpreted by the excavator Harald Thieme as testimony of a hunting event as well as the following cutting up and preparation of the kill. According to his scenario, the thick reeds at the lake shore gave the hunters cover, from where the horses, trapped between the hunters and the lake, were culled with accurate spear throws; because there are bones of young animals amongst the horse bones, he concludes that the hunt took place in autumn. Furthermore, he sees evidence of ritualistic activity; the spears, deformed by the load of the sediment pressure, are made from slim, straight spruce stems – except for spear IV, made from pine wood. The spears vary in length with diameters ranging from 29 to 47 mm.
They have been worked thoroughly and are evidence of developed technological skills and of a workmanlike tradition. Like in today’s tournament javelins, the greatest diameter and therefore its centre of gravity is in the front third of the shaft; the tips are worked symmetrically from the base of the stems, the end of the tips were worked beside the medullary ray, the weakest part of the stem, on purpose. In their throwing qualities, the Schöningen Spears are equal to modern tournament javelins. During tests, athletes could throw replicas up to 70 m; the choice of the wood is to be climatically determined, because during the cooler climate near the end of the interglacial, conifers grew close to the site of the finds. More unique wooden artefacts were found at the place of discovery of the wild horse hunting camp: a charred wooden staff as well as a wooden tool, tapered at both ends, interpreted as a throwing stick; the stone tools at the place of discovery consist of different pointed forms.
Evidence of blank production is missing. Among the finds are the so-called "grooved wooden tools", excavated at the place of discovery No. 12. Made from the hard wooden branch-bases of the European silver fir, noticeably incised at one end, they may have been used as a mounting for stone blades. If this interpretation is correct, they are the oldest composite tools of mankind. Thanks to the good preservation conditions at the place of discovery, there are many finds of small animals, among them small mammals, fish and insects. Together with the carpological remains they make a detailed reconstruction of the climate and the environment of the passing of an interglacial period possible; the spears and the place of discovery have revolutionized the picture of the cultural and social development of early humans. The widespread opinion was that Homo heidelbergensis were simple beings without language that lived on plants and carrion; the spears and their correlated finds are evidence of complex technological skills and are the fir
A metate or metlatl is a type or variety of quern, a ground stone tool used for processing grain and seeds. In traditional Mesoamerican culture, metates were used by women who would grind lime-treated maize and other organic materials during food preparation. Similar artifacts are found all over the world, including China. While varying in specific morphology, metates adhere to a common shape, they consist of large stones with a smooth depression or bowl worn into the upper surface. The bowl is formed by the continual and long-term grinding of materials using a smooth hand-held stone; this action consists of a horizontal grinding motion that differs from the vertical crushing motion used in a mortar and pestle. The depth of the bowl varies, though they are not deeper than those of a mortar; the specific angles of the metate body allow for a proficient method of turning grains into flour. Another type of metate called a grinding slab may be found among boulder or exposed bedrock outcroppings; the upper face of the stone is used for grinding materials, such as acorns, that results in the smoothing of the stone's face and the creation of pocked dimples.
Carved, volcanic-stone ceremonial metates represent one of the most unusual and complex traditions of pre-Columbian artifacts from Costa Rica. They come in many different forms, morphological variation corresponds to different regions and time periods, they can be rectangular, flat, or curved. They may not have rims and between three and four legs; some exhibits show signs of use-wear while others show no signs of wear and appear to have been made for use as burial goods. Some examples characterized as metate might have been a type of throne for sitting on – not a metate at all; some examples are known as effigy-headed metate, which feature an animal’s head at one end, with the metate itself making up the body of the creature. Animals depicted are jaguar, crocodile or birds; the most complex type of ceremonial metate is the class referred to as “flying-panel” metate. This style comes from the Atlantic watershed region, including the City of Guayabo and represents a high level of craftsmanship and complexity.
Carved from a single piece of stone, these metates contain multiple figures, both underneath the plate and on the legs. Trophy heads, jaguar and saurian figures are the most common themes; the “flying panel” metate is believed to be the precursor to free standing sculptural figures more common in the Atlantic watershed region. The earliest traditions of stone sculpture in Costa Rica, including ceremonial metate, began in late Period IV. Metate rimless plates; those from the Atlantic Watershed have a plate, horizontally flat and rimmed. Both are associated with mortuary goods, suggesting differential social status existed within these communities; the three main types of Costa Rican stone sculpture at this time—tripod-metate, mace heads and jade “axe-god” pendants—peaked and declined in use during Period V. Stone sculpture was never popular again in the Nicoya/Guanacaste region, but in the Atlantic Watershed by Period VI, freestanding figural sculpture and new forms of ceremonial metate came into use.
These new metate types might be rectangular with four legs like the jaguar effigy-head examples or might be round in shape with a pedestal base. These latter types have carved human heads around the rim implying a relationship with ritual trophy-head taking; this particular form of metate seems to have been influenced by the stone sculptures of the Panamanian site of Barriles. At the site of Las Huacas, fifteen metates were excavated from sixteen graves. None of these metates had manos, suggesting that the carved metate as a mortuary object had a deeper symbolic meaning than just the processing of foodstuffs; the metate's basic mechanical purpose is a platform. This transformation of grain to flour has symbolic implications relating to life and rebirth, it is still not clear if maize was a main source of sustenance, it is possible that maize was reserved for making chicha, for use in ritual feasting activities. Given their role as a burial good, it seems that metate held a strong meaning for human life and the hope for a rebirth or transformation of some kind.
The three most popular iconographic elements of ceremonial metate seem to be saurian and jaguar creatures. Monkeys are common. A unique feature of ceremonial metate is the lack of human figures. Disembodied heads are the sole exception. While human figures become the main subject of the free standing sculptures, which depict nude females or male warriors with trophy heads and bound male captives, these do not seem to have been depicted on metate. Flying-panel metates have anthropomorphic figures, but these always have animal heads. In both the Nicoya and Atlantic-Watershed regions, metates are made with saurian imagery, it is thought that the saurian represents the surface of the earth, which relates to agricultural fertility. One of the oldest and most prominent themes in Chibcha art is that of the Crocodile god. Depicted as an anthropomorphic being with a crocodile head, he has been carved into fly-panel metates, sometimes shown standing on a double-headed saurian and other times on a jaguar.
As a symbol, the do
A spear is a pole weapon consisting of a shaft of wood, with a pointed head. The head may be the sharpened end of the shaft itself, as is the case with fire hardened spears, or it may be made of a more durable material fastened to the shaft, such as flint, iron, steel or bronze; the most common design for hunting or combat spears since ancient times has incorporated a metal spearhead shaped like a triangle, lozenge, or leaf. The heads of fishing spears feature barbs or serrated edges; the word spear comes from the Old English spere, from the Proto-Germanic speri, from a Proto-Indo-European root *sper- "spear, pole". Spears can be divided into two broad categories: those designed for thrusting in melee combat and those designed for throwing; the spear has been used throughout human history both as a weapon. Along with the axe and club, it is one of the earliest and most important tools developed by early humans; as a weapon, it may be wielded with two. It was used in every conflict up until the modern era, where then it continues on in the form of the bayonet, is the most used weapon in history.
Spear manufacture and use is not confined to humans. It is practiced by the western chimpanzee. Chimpanzees near Kédougou, Senegal have been observed to create spears by breaking straight limbs off trees, stripping them of their bark and side branches, sharpening one end with their teeth, they used the weapons to hunt galagos sleeping in hollows. Archaeological evidence found in present-day Germany documents that wooden spears have been used for hunting since at least 400,000 years ago, a 2012 study suggests that Homo heidelbergensis may have developed the technology about 500,000 years ago. Wood does not preserve well and Craig Stanford, a primatologist and professor of anthropology at the University of Southern California, has suggested that the discovery of spear use by chimpanzees means that early humans used wooden spears as well five million years ago. Neanderthals were constructing stone spear heads from as early as 300,000 BP and by 250,000 years ago, wooden spears were made with fire-hardened points.
From circa 200,000 BC onwards, Middle Paleolithic humans began to make complex stone blades with flaked edges which were used as spear heads. These stone heads could be fixed to the spear shaft by gum or resin or by bindings made of animal sinew, leather strips or vegetable matter. During this period, a clear difference remained between spears designed to be thrown and those designed to be used in hand-to-hand combat. By the Magdalenian period, spear-throwers similar to the atlatl were in use; the spear is the main weapon of the warriors of Homer's Iliad. The use of both a single thrusting spear and two throwing spears are mentioned, it has been suggested. In the 7th century BC, the Greeks evolved the phalanx; the key to this formation was the hoplite, equipped with a large, bronze-faced shield and a 7–9 ft spear with an iron head and bronze butt-spike. The hoplite phalanx dominated warfare among the Greek City States from the 7th into the 4th century BC; the 4th century saw major changes. One was the greater use of light infantry armed with spear and javelins.
The other was the development of the sarissa, a two-handed pike 18 ft in length, by the Macedonians under Phillip of Macedon and Alexander the Great. The pike phalanx, supported by peltasts and cavalry, became the dominant mode of warfare among the Greeks from the late 4th century onward until Greek military systems were supplanted by the Roman legions. In the pre-Marian Roman armies, the first two lines of battle, the hastati and principes fought with a sword called a gladius and pila, heavy javelins that were designed to be thrown at an enemy to pierce and foul a target's shield; the principes were armed with a short spear called a hasta, but these fell out of use being replaced by the gladius. The third line, the triarii, continued to use the hasta. From the late 2nd century BC, all legionaries were equipped with the pilum; the pilum continued to be the standard legionary spear until the end of the 2nd century AD. Auxilia, were equipped with a simple hasta and throwing spears. During the 3rd century AD, although the pilum continued to be used, legionaries were equipped with other forms of throwing and thrusting spear, similar to auxilia of the previous century.
By the 4th century, the pilum had disappeared from common use. In the late period of the Roman Empire, the spear became more used because of its anti-cavalry capacities as the barbarian invasions were conducted by people with a developed culture of cavalry in warfare. Muslim warriors used a spear, called an az-zaġāyah. Berbers pronounced it zaġāya, but the English term, derived from the Old French via Berber, is "assegai", it is a pole weapon used for throwing or hurling a light spear or javelin made of hard wood and pointed with a forged iron tip. The az-zaġāyah played an important role during the Islamic conquest as well as during periods, well into the 20th century. A longer pole az-zaġāyah was being used as a hunting weapon from horseback; the az-zaġāyah was used. It existed in various forms in areas stretching from Southern Africa to the Indian subcontinent, although these place
Aşıklı Höyük is a settlement mound located nearly 1 km south of Kızılkaya village on the bank of the Melendiz brook, 25 kilometers southeast of Aksaray, Turkey. Aşıklı Höyük is located in an area covered by the volcanic tuff of central Cappadocia, in Aksaray Province; the archaeological site of Aşıklı Höyük was first settled in the Aceramic Neolithic period, around 9000 B. C, it is situated 1119.5 metres above sea level, a little higher than the region's average of c. 1000 metres. The site itself is about 4 ha smaller than the situated site of Çatalhöyük; the surrounding landscape is formed by erosion of river valleys into tuff deposits. The Melendiz Valley, where the Aşıklı Höyük is located, constitutes a favourable and diverse habitat; the proximity to an obsidian source did become the base of a trade with the material supplying areas as far away as today's Cyprus and Iraq. Aşıklı Höyük was first investigated by Professor Ian A. Todd when he visited the site in the summer of 1964. Todd emphasised the importance of the obsidian in the area, based on over 6000 obsidian pieces collected from the surface layer alone.
The site was classified as a medium sized mound and destroyed by the river situated next to it. On the basis of the lithics and animal bones located in the surface layers the site became known as a contemporary to the Palestine PPNB, reinforced by 14C dates; the first comprehensive excavations took place late: first when the government launched a plan that would result in the rise of the waters of the Mamasın Lake located close to Aşıklı Höyük, Professor Ufuk Esin started the salvage excavations in 1989. Nine excavations have been undertaken up to 2003, uncovering 4200 m2 on the horizontal plain, making it one of the largest scale excavations in the region; the newest dates for Aşıklı Höyük show that the occupational period was from 8200 to 7400 BC, extracted from 3 layers with a total of 13 phases. It is known as one of the earliest Aceramic Neolithic sites on the Anatolian plateau, the prior mentioned extraction of the obsidian source was to be frequented as far back as the Paleolithic nomadic hunter-gatherers.
Due to its date and structural organization Aşıklı Höyük is known to be "a prime example of a first foray into sedentism". After more than 400 rooms had been excavated, the total number of individual found to have been buried within the settlement did not surpass 70. All these burials were under building floors; the dead were placed in pits cut through the floor during the occupation of the building. The buried are people of all ages. There is a variety of skeletal body postures, from burials in a hocker position to extended skeletons facing upwards. Others are lying on one side with the legs bent at the knees; the orientation of the burials varies within the buildings, as does the number of individuals buried inside them. The male population had individuals up to the age of 55–57 years of age, while the majority of females died between the ages of 20 and 25; the skeletal remains of these women show spinal deformities indicating that they had to carry heavy loads. This does not itself prove; the fact that the men seem to have outlived the women might be interpreted as sign that the women were subject to more strenuous physical labour than their male counterparts.
From Natufian Abu Hureyra there are similar osteological signs, such as pathologies in metatarsals, phalanges and shoulder joints, being specific to females resulting from habitual kneeling in the use of saddle querns. The Neolithic evidence show indications of increased physical workload in the osteological material on both genders, where the male skeletons show signs of joint disease and trauma arguably caused by cutting timber and tilling. Children represent 37.8% of the deceased, with 43.7% mortality within a year of birth. The skeletal remains are complete and with articulations intact, indicating that the burials have been primary; the graves contain either double burials. On one occasion two graves were found under the floor of room AB, belonging to an adjacent court with a large domed mudbrick oven paved with blocks of basalt. In one of the graves were the skeletons of a young woman and an elderly man; the young woman had undergone trepanation and survived only a few days after the operation.
All skeletons were buried in the hocker position, a fetal-like positioning were the arms are embracing the lower limbs. From a different grave a woman shows signs of being scalped after her death, according to the cut marks on her skull; as many as 55% of the skeletons show signs of being burned. The burial under the floor AB is accommodated by walls with the interior side were painted in a purplish red colour; the oven in HG indicates that this was indeed "special individuals of an elite class", claiming it can be compared to the "Terrazzo" Building at Çayönü and the "Temple" Building at Nevalı Çori and therefore have been a shrine used for religious ceremonies. Many of the burials contain burial goods consisting of necklaces and bracelets made of beads of various sorts.70 burials in over 400 rooms suggest that some form of selection took place of, buried at the site, implementing that AB indeed could be the residence or resting place of people influential in terms of both economy and political power.
Rooms containing hearths are more to contain burials. It has been argued that the number of burials could be an